Qatar likely will not be hosting the 2022 World Cup, a top FIFA official said Monday. Why? The country is too hot.
“Medics say that they cannot accept responsibility with a World Cup taking place under these conditions,” Reuters reports FIFA Executive Committee member Theo Zwanziger saying. “I personally think that in the end the 2022 World Cup will not take place in Qatar.”
Qatar leaders have said they will equip stadiums, fan zones, and training areas with advanced cooling systems during the games, but Zwanziger said it won’t be enough.
“They may be able to cool the stadiums but a World Cup does not take place only there,” Zwanziger said.
A Qatari official quickly pushed back in a statement.
“Qatar will host the FIFA World Cup in 2022, despite comments of FIFA Executive Committee member Dr. Zwanziger, which reflect his personal opinion and not that of FIFA,” the official said. “The only question now is WHEN, not IF. Summer or winter, we will be ready. We have proven that a FIFA World Cup in Qatar in the summer is possible with state-of-the-art cooling technology. We have demonstrated that our cooling works in outdoor areas beyond stadiums.”